This past week marked the cutoff for bills to pass from a policy committee to receive further consideration in either the Rules Committee or in a fiscal committee. Bills not advancing from a policy committee are considered dead, unless of course considered necessary for the budget. To get additional details on any of the bills visit: http://apps.leg.wa.gov/billinfo/
Here are some of the bills that are still under consideration:
- SSB 5802 (Ranker/Governor Request Legislation) studying recommendations to reduce Washington’s greenhouse gas emissions. The bill, as it was introduced, concerned the broad business community because of the way the Council to review GHG emissions was established, and how the independent organization would be selected to conduct the study. The Senate Energy, Environment & Telecommunications Committee amended SSB 5802, bring balance to the Council and establishing a better process to select whom would do the study. The bill also now has provisions to require a minority report, and make recommendations back to the Legislature for action. Essentially SSB 5802 is a study bill that requires a broad look at policies already adopted in Washington, as well as a review of the cost effectiveness of other GHG emission reduction strategies. The amendments made by the Senate Committee addressed many of the concerns raised by AWB in public testimony, but we will continue to monitor the bills progress.
- SSB 5648 (Brown) creates additional flexibility under the Energy Independence Act to use energy conservation and eligible renewables to meet renewable energy targets. The bill also removes provisions from the Act that require purchasing renewable energy beyond a utilities needs for service. This bill is commonly referred to as buy-before-need.
- SHB 1106 (McCoy) modifies net metering statutes to allow third-party ownership, increases the maximum net metering capacity from 100 kWs to 199 kWs, among other things.
- SB 5297 & SB 5298 (Braun) deals with allowing purchasers of coal transition power to adjust load requirements under the Energy Independence Act for the purpose of compliance with renewable energy credit requirements.
- SSB 5400 (Honeyford) allows certain utilities to use renewable energy credits from within the Western Electricity Coordinating Council area to comply with the Energy Independence Act.
And some bills that failed to make it past the cutoff, including:
- HB 1169 (Shea) reevaluating the delegation of authority to state agencies in regards to programs that address GHG emissions.
- HB 1347 (Shea) and SB 5412 (Ericksen) to allow incremental electricity produced as a result of efficiency improvements to hydroelectric generation projects through BPA to count as renewable energy under I-937.
- SB 5321 (Ericksen) harmonizes state GHG reporting requirements with federal standards, and removes requirements for reporting if under 25,000 metric tons.